Few things are better than escaping into a much-loved hobby at the end of a long day. Engaging in activities like puzzles lowers stress levels, improves memory, enhances problem-solving skills and much, much more. And, as many of us have realized after pulling them out to occupy time in quarantine, they’re really lots of fun! If you have been doing jigsaw puzzles for a while and are looking for a new way to unwind, we have some great suggestions. From creating beautiful art with diamond art kits to learning a new activity like knitting or crocheting, here are a few of our favorite ideas.
1. Diamond Painting
Diamond painting is a lot like doing puzzles in that you strategically put small pieces in place to form a larger picture. The primary difference is, instead of searching for and fitting each of the pieces together in a specific place, you simply match up resin diamonds (called drills) to their coordinating symbol. Sound easy? It is! Think of diamond painting as an exciting activity that combines all the best aspects of puzzles, paint by numbers, and cross-stitch into a relaxing hobby that has taken the crafting world by storm.
By purchasing a kit from Diamond Art Club®, you will receive all the diamond painting supplies you need to complete your first masterpiece and then some, including: 1) a pre-printed, self-adhesive canvas 2) extra sparkly diamond drills in a variety of brilliant colors 3) a diamond placer tool with matching comfort grip and 2 multi-placers 4) a diamond tray with stopper 4) a heart-shaped wax container with 2 wax pads to help you pick up drills 5) an elegantly shaped cover minder to help you pull back the protective canvas cover while you paint 6) a complimentary roll of beautifully designed washi-tape 7) resealable baggies for storing your loose drills and 8) an inventory sheet with pre-cut sticker labels to help you stay organized. Each kit also comes with detailed, printed instructions, but learning how to paint with diamonds is a breeze! Once you have grasped the basic technique, completing this type of art is a relaxing and rewarding way to enjoy your free time. There’s nothing quite as thrilling as seeing hundreds of tiny diamonds transformed into a breathtaking work of art.
2. Word Puzzles
If you take pleasure by solving jigsaw puzzles, switching to word puzzles is an excellent way to change things up. Crosswords, word searches, and cryptograms are all excellent options that will engage your mind, broaden your vocabulary, and keep boredom at bay. They aren’t the only types of word games that are worth checking out, though. If you are searching for something new, try putting your brainpower to the test with logic puzzles, ciphers, or even rebus puzzles.
3. Knitting or Crocheting
Like putting puzzles together, knitting and crocheting enable you to make something beautiful using your own hands. But, instead of carefully arranging cardboard pieces to form an image, you follow a pattern and link various stitches to complete a soft, woven project. In the end, you’ll have a unique textile that you can either give to someone special, or enjoy for yourself. And, one of the best things about taking up one of these hobbies is that they are portable. Pack up a knitting bag and you can enjoy your hobby just about anywhere. The same certainly cannot be said for jigsaw puzzles!
Think cross-stitch is just a boring pastime for graying, grandmas? Think again! This traditional handicraft has seen a significant resurgence in popularity over the last few years, and its comeback has resulted in the publication of new patterns featuring every type of imagery imaginable. Modern cross-stitch is a fun, light-hearted hobby that is a wonderful option for anyone looking for a new crafting activity similar to doing puzzles.
5. Building Models
Take your game up a notch; instead of working on two-dimensional puzzles, try your hand at building a three-dimensional model. Whether you love cars, planes or architecture, there are model kits on the market to match your interests. And, building block sets aren’t just for kids anymore. There are no glue needed, click together sets now that allow you to create replicas of characters and scenes from film and television shows, like Star Wars, Sesame Street, and Friends. Similar to working on puzzles, constructing models engages the brain while easing stress and enhancing problem-solving skills.
Planting a garden is excellent for both your mental and physical health. And, in certain ways, it’s also similar to doing puzzles. When you plant a garden, you have to plan the space and figure out which plants to place near each other. You also need to consider how much room each plant needs. Because of this, planting a healthy garden is a lot like arranging the pieces of a puzzle. Only, in lieu of a pretty picture when you’re done, you’ll have lovely, green plants and loads of fresh veggies, herbs or flowers to enjoy.
If you enjoy hobbies like puzzles, but are looking for new ways to pass the time, the suggestions above are some excellent options other dissectologists love! They certainly aren’t the only ones, though. Anything that takes your mind off the stress of daily life, and helps you relax, is perfect. Try your hand at something you’ve never done before and you may just be surprised to discover that you have a new, favorite diversion.